Vanilla Crepe Cake, Anyone?




Good morning, ladies! Today just happens to be Round No. 2 of Miss S in the Kitchen (lucky you).
I'm going to be sharing yet another delicious recipe: Vanilla Crepe Cake.
What's a crepe cake, you ask? Only layers and layers of fluffy vanilla crepes and creme!
And if you like crepes and cream, then you'll love this recipe, I promise.

I'll have to warn you first that this is not an instant cake, as it requires overnight setting.
However, it's well worth the wait!


Here's how you'll make the batter:
Combine 2 c. flour, 3 c. milk, 4 eggs, 2 tbsp. oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1 tbsp. vanilla in a bowl.


Beat until blended. Heat a lightly-greased skillet. Spoon in about 2 tbsp. batter per crepe.



Cook and flip until both sides are just cooked (slightly browned and dry around the edges).




Invert your crepe onto wax paper. Repeat, layering wax and crepes. 
This should make 16 to 18 crepes.

As you wait for your crepes to cool, whip together (to soft peaks) the following:
1 quart of whipping cream with 2 c. powdered sugar, 1 tbsp vanilla, and a pinch of salt.
(Refrigerate cream if the crepes are not yet cool.)

Once the crepes have reached room temperature, pull out your handy springform pan.
Now, grab your spatula, crepes, and cream. Put a crepe at the bottom of the pan.
With your spatula, spread some whipped cream on that French pancake. Repeat.
Place your last crepe neatly on top, cover the pan, and refrigerate.

Let set overnight in the refrigerator.

When you're ready to eat (and you'll be ready to eat!), simply pop off the sides of the pan.
Place on your prettiest cake pedestal and photograph your accomplishment. 



Cut as you would any old cake (but this is not just any old cake).


Serve with strawberries, chocolate, more whipped cream...

I happen to think that caramel, any kind of berries or fruit sauce, pecan praline sauce, or cinnamon-sugar would also be delicious with this cake. (Basically, all of the standard dessert toppings would be yummy...)




Isn't she lovely?





Miss H loves cake!


And so, I hope, will you!


Thank you for allowing me to share this with you!

Thanks to all who made this cake possible!
Cake by Mom and Mr A.
Pictures by Miss S (and Mom).
Modelling by Miss H.



Sharing this at Vanessa and Heather's place:




Decor Coaxing :: Paint That Ugly Brick Fireplace


Today, my girlfriend, Anita, will be sharing how she overcame her
fear of painting over brick.

She'd anguished for far too long over the decision.
She'd lost precious time and brain cells worrying that she'd make the wrong choice:
too keep the brick as is, or freshen it to her liking.

Her hope is that, by the time you finish reading her story 
you will be encouraged to turn your HOUSE into your HOME.

This is a story of hope for those of you that are still on the fence about what to do 
about that sore thumb of a brick (or stone) surround in living room.




Anita's Story:


I was scared!!! 
I hated the dark, dull looking brick fireplace but should I break the cardinal rule of never painting brick? 


Day after day, I would sit and look at it. 
I would think, "I know it would look so much better a brighter, white color." 
But, I was afraid. 
The question of whether or not to paint the fireplace would be posed to any visitor walking through my door.




One Friday morning, I told my husband, "I am going to paint the fireplace today." 

He said, "Ok, but I am not helping with that project." 
No worries. 


I went and bought paint (the good kind - didn't go cheap on it) and started. 
I started. 
Unfortunately, with the wrong equipment. 
I have heard many times to always make sure you use the right tools 
and a foam brush is certainly not the correct tool for painting brick. 
I went to my nearby Hobby Lobby and found the perfect stenciling brush with stiff bristles 
that worked awesome in between the bricks. 
(You know, into those killer concrete grooves.) 




I also rolled it with those cute little rollers you always see them using on HGTV. 
I bought the correct roller type for brick. 
(I always wanted to use one of those!) 




Needless to say, a couple of hard, sweaty hours later I was done. 

I stepped back and took in my beautiful, bright fireplace! 
I LOVED IT!!! 
The room had brightened up considerably. 


Even the little boy down the street whom I lovingly refer to as my 3rd son 
walked in and said, "That looks great!" 


I knew that boy had good taste. 




My husband came in and said he loved it too! It was a win all the way around.




I would do it over again and again. 

It was almost 2 years of looking at that dull fireplace before I got up the nerve to just give it a shot. 


What could it hurt? 
That is the beauty of paint. 


If you don't like it, paint it another color. 
If you are thinking of doing this make today the day! 


I promise, you won't regret it.




Be inspired....GO... paint.


We thank you, Anita, for your testimony.
*wink.

Jaime

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Real Life Spaces :: Jessica's DIY Staging SOLD Her Home



I was so excited when I got this email from one of my blog reader/friends, Jessica, that read:

"My name is Jessi and I came across your blog a while ago while looking for staging tips for my home – 
we put it up for sale about a month ago and officially sold it last week (woo hoo!). "

It really makes my day, week, month, year, when I hear from you telling me that 
something I have shared has helped or blessed you!

So, let's hear Jessi's story about Do It Yourself Staging, take it away, girl:

DIY Home Staging

When we began the adventure of selling our home, we had no idea what we were getting into. 
Putting your house on the market is one of those things that forces you to learn by doing, 
especially when you decide sell privately. 
I work in the DIY industry (as a Community Coordinator for this repair and parts site), 
so taking matters into my own hands was a no-brainer, but I definitely needed all the help I could get. 


Coming across Leslie’s blog in a mad search for staging tips was a Godsend 
and I kept her advice in mind every step of the way. 
I am proud to say we officially sold our home two weeks ago 
and I couldn’t have done it without her help. Here is what we did!



BATHROOM

"Clean the bathroom till it looks like new. 
Tiles, grout, switch plates, air vent covers 
(these are usually rusty- remove, clean, and spray paint them glossy white)."
I’m a clean person and the house is only 6 years old, 
but that doesn’t mean I didn’t have my work cut out for me. 
I spent hours scrubbing the grout on my hands and knees, 
replacing the discolored caulking around the faucets and touching up the door and walls. 
Our bathroom also boasts a skylight, which is a nice feature for a bathroom but a huge pain to clean 
– (aka: we didn’t do it once, eek). 
A ladder, some elbow grease and a quick coat of paint had it looking like new. 
Over the four years that we owned this home, the whole bathroom went through some pretty big changes, and I was confident the end result would help us sell.

FOYER
“A table lamp for lighting and a vase for flowers is very important."


Our little split-entry home doesn’t have much in the way of a foyer. 
That said, I was sure to make sure that the entry way was clear of clutter, 
clean and welcoming for potential buyers. 
I removed our shoe rack and the ugly mat we’d used for winter footwear, 
and replaced them with one small table and a sweet little plant and flower arrangement. 
Doing this really helped open up an otherwise tiny space 
and the greenery added some much-needed character.


KITCHEN
"The kitchen, to many people, is THE most important space in the home.
If this room is staged right, it will absolutely impact the buyers
and generate many offers on a home for sale.
What are people looking for, you ask?
The same things YOU would be looking for in a kitchen:
Warmth, efficiency, cleanliness, organization, neutral tones, updated features."


Like the rest of our house, our kitchen is pretty tiny, but it gets a lot of afternoon sunlight 
and the white cabinets are a nice selling feature. 
One of the major reasons we decided to sell was because we needed more kitchen, 
which was obvious by the amount of stuff we had on our counters. 
To make sure ‘small’ wasn’t the first thing a buyer thought when walking into the kitchen, 
we took almost everything except the coffee pot off the counter 
and totally de-cluttered the cupboards, (this picture was taken just before we hid those items). 
We tried to schedule showings between 4 and 6 pm, so that the beautiful sun would be shining directly in, 
and I always placed fresh flowers on the island or kitchen table.



LIVING ROOM
“Remove extra furniture, personal items (pictures/books/art), unhealthy or excess plants, heavy window treatments (or at least pull them to the sides of the windows), from the room.”




We removed an area rug, two coffee tables, an end-table, a deep-freezer 
and a few dying plants from our TV room. I had no idea how much excess we had in there until it was gone. Here is an after shot of the room from our listing:


BEDROOM
“Always, always, always make sure there are alternative lighting sources besides 
the light on the ceiling or ceiling fan. Keep them on for showings.”

Even though we tried to organize most of our showings for the afternoon, 
we still made sure the bedroom was bright and inviting by leaving the lamp on beside the bed, 
opening up the curtains and lighting an unscented candle for ambiance. 
When we originally decided to sell, our bedroom was in quite the state and we knew 
it would need some work to make it more appealing. 
I painted the dark walls a light gray, purchased a new bedspread, curtains and some accessory pillows. Although we didn’t have a tray for the bed like Leslie suggests, 
I did place a blanket in the corner to add to the room. 
Don’t worry, the dog bed was removed for the listing pictures and hidden away for every showing.

Total, we had eight showings and sold our home twelve days after officially listing it. 
The actual process of cleaning, completing minor repairs and updates 
and getting ourselves ready, really took around 6 months though. 

Putting your house on the market is no easy task, but by educating ourselves 
and paying attention to what I learned by reading Leslie’s blog and others, 
we went into it feeling positive and confident. 

I know most of you are already sold on just how well home staging can work 
– I’m just living proof!
Cheers to happy homes!

Love, Jessi

~

Thank you, Jessi, for taking the time to write and take pictures!
You blessed my heart!

To see more of my Blog Posts on Home Staging, go HERE.
To see my Pinterest Board on Home Staging, go HERE.

Jaime










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Organizing Made Fun :: 10 Causes and Cures for Clutter


Hello, ladies and friends!

Today,
I am over at Becky's place, Organizing Made Fun to share:



Stop by, and tell Becky I sent ya!

XOXOXO

Jaime

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